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The Benefits of Volunteering for Adult Learners with Additional Needs



Volunteering is an excellent way to give back to society whilst also gaining knowledge, skills, and personal satisfaction. Adults with additional needs, including those with learning disabilities, are no exception. In fact, volunteering can have significant benefits for them. It not only helps to build self-confidence, independence and a sense of belonging, but it also provides opportunities for social interaction and personal growth, which can be particularly useful in their journey of learning and development. In this blog, we will explore those benefits in more depth:

 

Development of essential skills and qualities through volunteering

Volunteering can enable adult learners with additional needs to acquire various skills and qualities that are essential both inside and outside the workplace. These include communication and interpersonal skills, problem-solving and critical thinking skills, teamwork, leadership, patience, understanding, and compassion. These skills can help them pursue their goals and improve their quality of life. Volunteering is also an excellent way to gain practical experience and develop real-world skills related to certain professions when volunteering in areas such as retail, animal shelters, libraries or community centres.

 

Improved self-esteem and confidence

Volunteering can be a confidence and self-esteem booster for adults with additional needs. Through volunteering, they can feel valued and appreciated by others, which can be empowering and boost their self-esteem. Additionally, volunteering can provide a sense of purpose and accomplishment, enhancing their self-worth.

 

Increased social interaction

Social interaction can be challenging for some adults with additional needs, leading to social isolation and loneliness. Volunteering can help overcome these issues by exposing them to new people, social situations and creating opportunities to build positive relationships. Volunteering offers a platform where they can meet new people, share their stories, find common interests, and develop lasting friendships with others.

 

Greater sense of community involvement and belonging

Volunteering allows adult learners with additional needs to become active members of their community, thus fostering a sense of belonging. Volunteering also instills a sense of responsibility, allowing them to contribute positively and feeling integrated into society.

 

Personal growth

Volunteering can spur personal growth. They can learn about new ideas, concepts and values that can broaden their horizons and promote personal growth. They can also explore new passions, interests and develop new hobbies, leading to a more holistic life.

 

Volunteering presents adult learners with a unique opportunity for them to acquire essential skills and qualities, build self-esteem, increase social interaction, feel a sense of community involvement and belonging, and promote personal growth. It is important to support and encourage them to participate in volunteering opportunities as it can meaningfully impact their lives.

 

Here at Oak Lodge we love to see how much our adults benefit from volunteering. If you want to find out more about what we do, please visit our website or call us on 01494 417500.

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